Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education addresses rising demand for early childhood education professionals in Asia

Yew Chung College of Early Childhood Education (YCCECE), the only tertiary institution that focuses solely on early childhood education (ECE), paves the way for the influential industry by offering those interested in the field an alternative to government-funded universities through various and flexible specialised programmes. The demand for childcare professionals has risen since the Hong Kong Government proposed changes to the manning ratio from 1:8 to 1:6 for children aged zero to under two, and from 1:14 to 1:11 for children aged two to three within the 2019-2020 academic year. YCCECE has launched diversified programmes specially designed to address the rising need and to provide more opportunities for those passionate about careers in early childhood education.

YCCECE, founded by Yew Chung Education Foundation (YCEF), has launched multiple programmes with different qualifications, ranging from diploma, higher diploma to its flagship Bachelor of Education (Hons) degree (BEdECE). As the only education institution in Asia that focuses on ECE, YCCECE is deeply committed to nurturing a new generation of ECE professionals, who will bring an enduring positive impact to the lives of the next generation and ultimately contribute to the future development of Hong Kong’s society.

Professor Allan Yuen, President of YCCECE said, “By investing greater resources in to the early education sector, the government has demonstrated the importance of nurturing not only Hong Kong’s youngest, but also the kindergarten teachers and childcare workers at the forefront of early education. YCCECE supports the government’s policy by introducing new specialised programmes and experiences, enabling students to achieve their life goals. In addition, the college strives to become the ECE centre of excellence in Asia through our high-quality and diverse education offering. Due to the credibility of the college and popularity of the programmes available, the number of students studying in YCCECE has increased 20% in 2019/20. The student mix including HKDSE graduates, current kindergarten teachers as well as parents of young children etc”

Tailored programmes meeting industry needs
Since 2018, YCCECE has offered a four-year Bachelor of Education (Hon) Degree in Early Childhood Education (BEdECE) providing local students with the opportunity to become qualified educators with all four ECE Professional Qualifications (registered kindergarten teacher, childcare worker, special childcare worker and supervisor) after graduation. Additionally, the College is also proud to be the first and only in Hong Kong to offer Infant & Toddler (InTod) concentration. From infant-toddler systems, to assessment purposes and approaches for describing infants and toddlers in their environments, the concentration strengthens students’ skills and knowledge in their opted area of specialism, giving them competitive edge for employment.

Recognising the lack of Special Education Needs (SEN) experts in the city, where 75 percent of SEN students do not receive the relevant support according to reports earlier, YCCECE offers concentration in SEN – equipping students with the capabilities needed by granting them relevant professional qualifications and opportunities to do practicum in SEN organisations.

Extensive practicum and field experience
To further enhance students’ competitiveness, YCCECE equips students with relevant work experience. Along with the compulsory practicum in local, international kindergartens and special education settings, the college also provides students with tremendous opportunities to gain real-life experience with children through practising at Pamela Peck Discovery Space. The specialised institution also offers exclusively the “Teachers of Tomorrow Scheme”, under which students with demonstrated excellence in academics and practicum performance can apply in their Final Year to work for one year at Yew Chung International School (YCIS) in Hong Kong or at one of its sister schools/kindergartens in Mainland China after graduation. Higher Diploma graduates in the Teachers of Tomorrow Scheme will also receive a full scholarship to support their study in Bachelor’s Degree programme in YCCECE as well. This opportunity enables students to embrace a promising future with a boarder network and unique edge.

With a world-class academic team, YCCECE teaches all courses (except Chinese Language courses) in English language, ensuring students to are immersed fully in an English learning environment that gathers students of diversified backgrounds, cultures and nationalities. YCCECE also offers students international exposure through extensive overseas experiences including exchange trips and field experiences.

The ECE programmes have become increasingly favoured by secondary graduates due to the promising career prospects. Boasting a 100 percent employment rate recorded in 2018, YCCECE’s higher-diploma graduates respectively go on to earn a competitive salary with an average starting point of over HKD19,000, the highest among the self-financing institutions providing ECE Higher Diploma in HK in 2019. Graduates also enjoy diversified career options such as kindergarten teachers, childcare workers and supervisors, and special childcare workers in various institutions including social welfare and non-governmental organisations.

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